With thousands of newspaper reporters and editors getting pink slips this summer, it’s time to think of the future for the once honorable profession. I predict that the practice of newspaper journalism will become a hobby for old timers.
They will form “guilds” and get together to discuss the days when they had a hand in bringing down presidents and most members of the Republican party. The fun they had trashing the military, mocking MBAs and smearing corporate CEOs — good times! Meanwhile, they helped rewrite history, making heroes of Jimmy Carter, Al Gore, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, Hugo Chavez and Fidel Castro.
Not unlike model railroad enthusiasts, retirees who waste away hours building mini cities with lichen evergreen trees and molded plastic mountains, old journos will have artifacts displayed around their rent-protected apartments, posters of Che, old typewriters, Green T-shirts, famous front pages of newspapers like “BUSH WINS!” printed before the Florida recount, they still don’t realize the headline was right, Bush did win and the Democrat party in Dade and Palm Beach counties tried to count bumps and chads as votes, while they discounted votes from resident military.
Former journalists will be semi-retired, working as greeters at Wal-Mart or sales associates at Borders Books. Those will be the better day jobs. Some will have blogs with readership in the dozens rather than tens of thousands they had in their hay days.
They can pretend to put out daily editions with DVDs playing classics like “The Front Page,” “All the President’s Men,” and episodes of “Lou Grant.”
Some will retain their journalist title by writing freelance for the local alternative press or if they are really good, the surviving monopoly big city newspaper that puts out a free tabloid addition once a week to augment its online daily edtions ‘Updated by the Minute’ will be one of their promotions.
“Pass me some prunes with sea grass, Debbie! Let’s write some sidebars on tips to avoid global warming.” “Wasn’t it grand that we saved Anwar from the gluttonous oil companies?” “Gas is $8 a gallon now as it is in Europe.” “America has finally matured.”
“I walk to the corner co-op for groceries anyway; that’s the way it should be.”
“I’m sure thankful Obama saved our Social Security…”
— Mick Gregory